ECO ADVENTURES: ROBBERG HIKING & INTERPRETATION

 

The iconic fynbos covered Robberg Peninsula, a landmark often referred to as the Cape Point of the Garden Route, is a Marine Protected Area and a national monument.
Robberg’s rock formations date back between 110 and 130 million years when South Africa formed part of a super continent. Around 120 million years ago the continent split, depositing Robberg’s rocks in the sea bed.
It is here that the African Edu-Eco Wizard team has integrated several Experiential Interpretative Eco-Hiking activities on the Garden Route and more specifically on the Robberg Peninsula into its portfolio of Passive Adventures. Their lead guides are professional and very highly qualified, survivors in their own right, educators and teachers who love sharing and teaching what they know. The various hiking programs can be enjoyed either in the early morning or mid-late afternoon depending on your availability.

To find out more visit African Edu-Eco Wizard or call Wayne Johnson on  079 753 8968. -THEGREMLIN

TRAINING YOUR CAT TO WALK ON A LEASH

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Know thy feline. Most cats, and especially kittens, can be trained to walk on a harness and leash.
Most will appreciate the opportunity to safely explore a new, exciting outdoor environment. But that is most cats … not all. If you suspect your cat would never in a million years be agreeable to walking on a leash, you’re probably right. But it can’t hurt to try.

Purchase a harness for the leash, not a collar. If your cat runs up a tree, a standard collar could strangle him, and a breakaway collar will detach. In addition, kitties are extremely flexible and able to fit through tiny, awkward spaces. It isn’t uncommon for cats to make like Houdini and find a way out of their collars. You don’t want this worry while you’re outdoors with your cat.
There are harnesses designed for cats, as well as walking jackets1 and kitty holsters2. The leash attachment is toward the middle on these harnesses rather than at the neck, which is much safer and less stressful for your kitty. (If you fear your cat will never take to walks outdoors but you want to give it a try, buy your gear from a retailer with a liberal return policy.)

Start slow, take baby steps forward, and expect setbacks. As anyone knows who is owned by a cat, they are not dogs and will do what they want, when they want, for however long they want. But what many cat lovers don’t realize is most kitties do actually respond to food treats, verbal praise, and praise in the form of head pats and ear scratches.
Do your training sessions when your cat is hungry. Break treats into very small pieces – your kitty’s level of cooperation will decrease in direct proportion to how quickly her tummy gets full. Cats don’t have a desire to please their humans like dogs do, so food treats are their primary incentive. To insure you don’t overfeed, limit treat-giving to training sessions.

Before you even think about stepping outside you must get your cat used to wearing the harness and leash. Put the harness on your cat, making sure it’s snug but not too tight. The second you’ve got the harness on, before you let go of her, give her a treat. If she takes a step in the harness, give her a treat, praise her and pat her on the head. Repeat the treating and praising if she continues to move about in her harness.
If instead kitty drops to the ground, wait to see if she moves and give a treat if she does. If she seems frozen in place, or if her way of freaking out is to run and hide under something, remove the harness and give a treat as a peace offering. Try leaving the harness near your cat’s food bowl at mealtime and near her favorite napping spot for a few days to get her used to seeing it in places she associates with good things.
You can also hold the harness and a few treats and when/if kitty sniffs the harness, give her a treat. Next hold the harness against her body and offer a treat. As she sniffs the treat, slowly pull the harness away and let her eat the treat.
Giving treats immediately is crucial because your cat has an attention span of mere seconds, and you want her to connect a desired action with getting a treat.
As your cat learns to tolerate the harness and leash for longer periods, give her a constant stream of verbal praise, head pats and food treats while she’s wearing it. When she’s obviously done with a training session, meaning she’s dropped to the ground, her tail is switching, ears flattened – whatever signs she normally gives that she’s no longer enjoying herself – remove the harness immediately. You want to end the session with kitty feeling confident and in control.

Once your cat is walking around in his harness and leash in a normal manner, you can step outside the door. Depending on your pet’s temperament, you could easily spend the next month just getting down the front walk or onto the grass. Or … you could be taking kitty on real nature walks in 30 days. It just depends on how easily your cat adjusts to being outdoors and tethered to you.
If your neighborhood has lots of traffic noise, dogs, or other distractions that your cat views as threatening, try taking her to a quieter area where she’s less exposed to frightening sights and sounds.
Coax your cat a little farther on each outing. When he’s eagerly exploring a new area with his tail up, take another baby step.
Make sure your kitty doesn’t pick up anything in her mouth or lick anything. And no tree climbing for leashed cats. It’s too dangerous.
Don’t tie your cat’s leash to something and leave her outside, even for a minute. If something spooks her, she could get tangled in the leash. If she’s threatened by another animal or even a person, she can’t get away. Your kitty should never be outside unattended for any reason.
Expect setbacks. Your cat might be okay in a new area on Monday and when you take him there on Tuesday, something freaks him out. Step back to the last place he was comfortable, and start moving forward with baby steps again. And unless your kitty is in harm’s way, resist the urge to pick him up if something spooks him. It’s better for his confidence if you can leave him on the ground.

LIFE… with Elsa

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Why is the grass greener on the other side?
So, you say the grass is greener on the other side? Interesting observation.
What makes the grass less green on your own side? What have you done to keep your grass green?

Because of this perception, we have been taught over centuries, that things are always better somewhere else; we fall into the trap thinking that when we “move” to where it seems better, the same trials will never feature again.
Well, think about it, how many times (after avoiding something) you just end up facing it again. Sure, it is difficult, painful and sometimes easier to avoid the obstacles altogether.
When we avoid it, however, it will just surface again wearing a different “coat”.
Example; Mary married her second husband thinking he is different from her first husband. She never worked through the divorce because she felt that her ex-husband made all the mistakes. After a while, married to her second husband, she discovers to her horror that he is indeed the same as the first. If Mary identified what the obstacles were in her first marriage, she might have solved them leading her to marry an entirely different man the second time.
We as humans are ‘ticking’ by ourselves. Our unconscious minds know when it is time to grow and then these obstacles come along. The same obstacle will continue to appear UNTIL you solved it once and for all. The solving part varies from forgiving, growing spiritually or emotionally, confronting someone, learning to love unconditionally, etc.
Obstacles have different forms and can be anything that will lead you to grow and move towards your full potential.

Are you experiencing obstacles in your life?

Let Take a Leap Coaching help you FIND YOUR WINGS!

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WINTER TREATS AT THE TURBINE

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Knysna is beautiful at any time of year, but there’s something extra magical about this picturesque little town in the quiet of winter.
When the crowds depart and crisper evenings arrive, the Turbine Boutique Hotel and Spa makes the perfect base for a warming winter weekend. There’s plenty to do too, and the Turbine is offering special packages built around a series of events that make Knysna the cultural capital of the Garden Route.
The Pink Loerie Mardi Gras and Parade will bring a flamboyant party touch to town from 26 April to 01 May with floats, performers and DJs and a variety of shows held throughout the town.
Petrol heads can get their motors revving with the Knysna Motor Show on 30 April followed by the Jaguar Simola Hill Climb from 04 to 07 May, which brings classic car displays and adventurous races.
The town’s most famous celebration is the Knysna Oyster Festival from 07 to 16 July, when visitors will enjoy the freshest seafood, exquisite wines from local vineyards, sports challenges and live entertainment.
Whatever the reason you’re in town, the Turbine is an oasis of calm amid the activity, with its luxurious spa, elegant restaurant and welcoming Gastro Pub. Quirky touches abound, with individually styled bedrooms created in the historic shell of a former power station.
Our special offers include the Romantic Thesen Island Getaway from R1 275 per person sharing per night, with breakfast, bubbly on arrival, a romantic bath and a 2-course dinner at Island Café. The Thesen Island Spa Retreat includes breakfast, a 90-minute spa experience and a 2-course dinner at Island Café from R1 685 per person sharing per night.
These special offers are only available for clients who book directly with the hotel by phone or online, and are subject to availability. Rates valid from 18 April 2017 to 30 September 2017.
Contact details:
Reservations Tel: 044 302 5746
Email: reservations@turbinehotel.co.za
www.turbinehotel.co.za
Facebook: Turbine Hotel & Spa
Twitter: https://twitter.com/TheTurbineHotel
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/turbinehotel/
– THEGREMLIN

GARDEN ROUTE MAKES NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC LIST

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This road trip will break your Instagram, says National Geographic writer Maryellen Kennedy Duckett in her list of the best Spring Trips for 2017. She is referring to the Garden Route, the beautiful stretch of coastal highway linking Cape Town to Port Elizabeth, which leads road-trippers straight through Plett.
“South Africa’s southern N2 highway from Cape Town (Western Cape) to Port Elizabeth (Eastern Cape) was designed for detours. Instead of driving straight through (about 460 miles), pull off frequently—particularly on the spectacularly scenic Garden Route section—to explore lagoons, lakes, forests, mountains, beaches, and bays.”
We are thrilled that the Garden Route has been included in this list as an opportunity for National Geographic readers to learn more about the Garden Route and Plettenberg Bay.
-THEGREMLIN

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